In a recent interview with ESPN, Cleveland Cavaliers head coach Tyronn Lue revealed that he is being treated for anxiety. Lue told the network that he was forced to step away from coaching the team in March due to health reasons, which included severe chest pains and insomnia. “I think for the first time in my twenty-year career I had a chance to focus on me”, Lue said, “It wasn’t as bad as people thought it was. But I did have some chest pains for the past couple of years.”
Lue spoke candidly about the difficult time he had leaving the team, telling the New York Times that he tried his best to work through the pain, but that it eventually proved too serious to overlook. “While I tried to work through it, the last thing I want is for it to affect the team”, he explained, “My goal is to come out of it a stronger and healthier version of myself so I can continue to lead this team to the championship we are all working towards.”
Lue told CBS Sports that Steve Kerr, the head coach for the Golden State Warriors, was the one who made him feel at ease about taking time off. “This was the first time where I really just had a chance to focus on me and get myself right and he reminded me of that,” Lue explained, “We get so wrapped up in the game that we forget about real life and it was the best advice I got– so thank Steve for that.”
Lue is the latest NBA coach who has stepped away from the job for health and stress-related reasons. Charlotte Hornets coach Steve Clifford missed 21 games earlier this season due to headaches and pains caused by sleep deprivation. Kerr also has taken portions of the last two seasons off to deal with his own health issues. These coaches have led to a greater awareness of anxiety in professional sports, and how serious it can be over an extended period of time.
In an interview with The Los Angeles Times, Lakers coach Luke Walton wished Lue his best and talked about the stress that comes being a head coach. “I’m not sure what it is with Ty, but my thoughts and prayers are with him that he gets better and gets back to coaching because I know he loves coaching.” Walton stressed the importance of rest, saying “It’s important that coaches take time to also take care of themselves as far as health… whether that’s workouts, meditate, whatever it is.”
Fortunately, Lue told ESPN that a chance in diet and a different medication routine have allowed him to get a better grasp on his health. “[I] hired a chef”, he told ESPN, “Stopped drinking as many Shirley Temples. And stopped with the sweets and got back to taking care of myself. Now I feel great.”
Lue will be on the court as the Cavaliers and the Warriors face off for game one of the 2018 NBA Finals.
Source: Heavy Sports